So just what is the Tea Party movement all about anyway? Limited government? Individual liberty? Fiscal responsibility? Conservative social values? Well, according to Jonathan Haidt, Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia, in an article that appeared today in the Wall Street Journal, what drives many adherents of the Tea Party phenomenon is the love for the Law of Karma.
Yes, Karma. That New Age, 1960s, long-haired, counter-culture kitschy concept borrowed from Hindu and Buddhist beliefs. As Haidt describes it, Karma is a conservative concept that basically claims that for every action “there is an equally and morally commensurate reaction.” Or to put it into a Christian context: What you sow, you shall also reap. Haidt posits that what angers so many Tea Party participants is the liberal penchant for attempting to eliminate all those annoying little consequences that come out of immoral, corrupt, and just plain bad behavior.
Liberals in the 1960s and 1970s seemed intent on protecting people from the punitive side of karma. Premarital sex was separated from its consequences (by birth control, abortion and more permissive norms); bearing children out-of-wedlock was made affordable (by passing costs on to taxpayers); even violent crime was partially shielded from punishment (by liberal reforms that aimed to protect defendants and limit the powers of the police).
Now jump ahead to today’s ongoing financial and economic crisis. Again, those guilty of corruption and irresponsibility have escaped the consequences of their wrongdoing, rescued first by President Bush and then by President Obama. Bailouts and bonuses sent unimaginable sums of the taxpayers’ money to the very people who brought calamity upon the rest of us. Where is punishment for the wicked?
Haidt contends that it is social conservatives who are the firm believers in the Law of Karma while libertarians and liberals are not. Mr. Haidt comes to the conclusion, based on surveys he has conducted, that the Tea Party movement can not long hang together due to the fact that it consists of an” uneven blend” of conservatives and libertarians. Hmmm.
Sorry, Professor Haidt, but despite your academic accolades, I must disagree. I may be just an undocumented observer of the American and International scene, but I think I can spot a big reach when it’s put up for offer. I believe there are an overwhelming number of Americans on all sides of the political spectrum who are getting more than a little sick and tired of picking up the tab for all those poor-me portions of our population. When the same groups of people are proffered in perpetuity to the American taxpayer as in need of rescuing and saving, and therefore deserving of eternal subsidizing, well, it may take us decades, but eventually, us gullible rubes begin to realize we’re being taken to the proverbial progressive cleaners.
Example #1: The unemployment rate for black teens between the ages of 16 and 19 stands at 49%. Yet we have businesses in the hotel, restaurant, and landscaping industries that can’t find workers. These entry-level jobs may not be high-paying or glamorous, but they provide a paycheck, work experience, and a start in life. But heck, we can’t expect young black men to take jobs that illegal immigrants could easily fill. So hey America, fork over those food stamps and start whipping out those welfare checks!
Example #2. One out of five gay men is infected with the HIV virus. Millions, or is it billions, of taxpayer money has flooded into AIDS research and millions and billions of more bucks have poured into AIDS groups and outreach programs in the form of grants and subsidized treatment protocols. Yet within the gay community, there festers an adolescent mindset that proclaims no responsibility whatsoever for the spread of HIV. Instead, it haughtily assumes that taxpayers should underwrite their sad and sexually obsessive culture. Just pony up with the cash, America, and keep your mouth shut, because if you dare to raise your voice in protest, you’ll be tarred and feathered faster than those ACT UP punks can shout, Gay Pride!.
You’re right about the Karma, Professor, but wrong about the extent of the anger and disgust that is sweeping the nation. We’re fed-up with the progressive parasites who think they can forever feast off of our hard work and our sacrifices.
I think John Lennon, Mr. Counter-Culture himself might have said it best when he croaked out the words: Instant Karma’s gonna get you, gonna knock you right on the head! And let us not forget that sisterly slogan from the NOW defunct women’s movement—it so aptly speaks to the Tea Party rage: Off Our Backs!
You see, we are now the revolutionaries. We are now the oppressed. And we are gonna take back America.